I have been working in the tech industry for well over a year now, firstly as an intern and now as a full-time employee. Tech burn-out is nothing new. I myself have faced it a few times and trust me it is the worst thing you can go through.
Before the pandemic, it was possible for a person having spent the majority of his time working in technology to take sabbatical leaves to recharge and energize. But these days, Tech burn-out is a lot more common and a lot more severe.
What is Burnout?
It refers to a combination of increased anxiety, stress, physical, emotional, or mental health-related problems because of high work pressure or inability to cope with increased expectations.
First of all, Tech burnout is completely normal and every person in technology has faced it during some phase of their career.
Having burned out doesn’t mean you are weak or incapable, it just means that the work and deadlines need to be readjusted to match your normal working speed and hours.
Humans are not Machines
One of the common themes behind tech burnout is modern-day businesses having unrealistic expectations and deadlines for a particular product, feature, or service.
If these expectations are beyond deliverable and on tight deadlines, such tasks can often lead to bad code, adoption of bad practices, and unnecessary long work hours for the developers and managers.
Due to remote work and the decrease in human interaction, sometimes Businesses forget to empathize and start treating employees not as “humans” but as “machines” or just another “resource”.
Less human interaction means that companies unknowingly increase the burden on employees without due consideration to the problems faced by many due to remote work.
Stress Is High When Work Pressure is More!
Stringent deadlines can lead to employees compromising their health and well-being. This not only affects their work but also their personal lives.
Some companies try to champion employees who work long hours and even work on weekends but these policies are not employee-centric, they focus on increased productivity by putting the lives of their employees at risk.
Your mental health is more important!
Having peace of mind at the workplace is important if you want longevity in tech. A rested mind is better at solving problems than a tired mind.
You may be earning a 6 figure salary and have the coziest lifestyle but that doesn’t guarantee mental peace. Sometimes your job makes or breaks you.
7 things to do if you feel burned out at your job
The first step to preventing burnout is to acknowledge when you first start facing it. It could be dizziness, anxiety, or increased stress due to work. If you face any of these conditions know that you need to stop.
2. Learn to say “No” to Additional tasks if you have pending backlogs
Learn to communicate with your Manager or Lead. Tell them the problem you are facing, and most of them will try to accommodate you for the same either by reducing your workload or postponing the deadlines.
3. Take a Break
Breaks tend to be one of the best ways to recharge your mind if you are facing burnout. Try to visit a hill station or try trekking with your friends, visit someplace where access to technology is limited. Holidays and leaves are the best ways to replenish the mind.
4. Try Meditation and Work Out
Daily meditation and workouts can elevate symptoms of burnout. When you exercise, your body releases chemicals called endorphins. Endorphins interact with the receptors in your brain that reduce your perception of pain.
Workout and meditations help maintain a sound mind & body and are highly recommended to reduce stress and anxiety.
5. Ask for Help
Severe burnout symptoms can be dangerous. New joiners or freshers tend to work long hours to try to learn everything fast and complete tasks within deadlines. In such situations, it is better to slow down and ask your seniors for help.
Counseling can also help in helping you manage stress and anxiety problems. Never feel alone! Speak up and ask for help!
6. Socialize and Empathize with Others Facing Burnout
It is a small world, learn to empathize with your co-workers and support them if they are feeling burned out. By talking about our problems openly, we tend to find better solutions together.
7. Talk to Management to Have Employee-Friendly Policies
Good policies help employees maintain work-life balance and it increases productivity, which in turn helps build better products with minimum bugs.
It is in the company’s interest to treat its employees right as ultimately they are the ones who are going to work and deliver the finished product.
Ignoring Employee Well-Being Can Be Dangerous For A Company
One of the more recent examples of how overworked employees and unrealistic deadlines can affect product quality is the release of Cyberpunk 2077.
Cyberpunk 2077 was anticipated to be the biggest game release of 2020, but it failed to deliver on the hype.
Suffering from numerous bugs and performance issues it has been termed “one of the most conspicuous disasters in the gaming industry’s history.”
Tech burnout can be tough as many of us are dependent on technology for our livelihood. In times like these, it is important to remember that your life matters more than anything.
Learn to speak out — talk to your family members, friends, coworkers, and manager. It is easy to act tough and brush off the initial symptoms of burnout but it will be in your interest to slow down and fix those issues before they become severe.
Always remember: You are not alone in this! It is okay to ask for help!